Nottingham Forest are officially mathematically secure from relegation following a hard fought 1-1 draw at home with Stoke City.

Rabbi Matondo opened the scoring for Stoke after he latched onto Josh Tymon’s deep cross, somewhat against the run of play.

However, the Reds retaliated after the second half after an exquisite Anthony Knockaert ball fell for Lewis Grabban to prod home.

After a fiercely contested point, here are three things that we learnt…

Forest
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND – APRIL 24: Lewis Grabban of Nottingham Forest battles for possession with Danny Batth of Stoke City during the Sky Bet Championship match between Nottingham Forest and Stoke City at City Ground on April 24, 2021 in Nottingham, England. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

All the ball, but no idea

If anything highlighted the creative woes at Forest, it was this match as once again, the Reds had lots of the ball and did nothing with it.

The passing was crisp and largely accurate, but it meant nothing as barely any of it was of any danger to a Stoke side happy to sit.

Lo and behold, the Reds were stung by this when Stoke broke away and scored with pretty much their first effort on goal.

It’s something that seriously needs to be addressed in the summer, as their creativity is basically non-existent.

Forest
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND APRIL 24: Rhys Norrington-Davies of Stoke City battles for possession with Luke Freeman of Nottingham Forest during the Sky Bet Championship match between Nottingham Forest and Stoke City at City Ground on April 24, 2021 in Nottingham, England. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

Half time teamtalk fires up Reds

Fans were concerned at the lack of creativity at half time, but whatever was said at the break clearly worked.

 

Forest started much brighter and much sharper and within five minutes, Grabban had scored following great wing play from Knockaert.

It’s annoying how it seems Forest need to concede to kick into life, but when they are on it, they can cause any team problems.

It’s just a case now of trying to get Forest firing from the start and subsequently, making the most of being on top.

Forest
NOTTINGHAM, ENGLAND – APRIL 24: Scott McKenna of Nottingham Forest is tackled by Danny Batth of Stoke City during the Sky Bet Championship match between Nottingham Forest and Stoke City at City Ground on April 24, 2021 in Nottingham, England. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)

Not pretty, but the job’s done

It was far from a vintage Nottingham Forest performance, but the result – combined with results elsewhere – mean that the Reds are mathematically safe.

It’s been a hugely frustrating campaign all round for the Reds, but they can at least rest easy knowing that the job is done for the last two games.

There is a lot of work that needs doing to this side if they are to be a competitive force next season, but this will be a lift for the team.

Chris Hughton now has the opportunity to experiment for the last two games, which will be intriguing to witness.

How much does this result ease tension for Nottingham Forest?

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